FILE - In this Feb. 15, 2011, file photo, Lance Armstrong pauses during an interview in Austin, Texas. Armstrong said on Thursday, Aug. 23, 2012, that he is finished fighting charges from the United States Anti-Doping Agency that he used performance-enhancing drugs during his unprecedented cycling career, a decision that could put his string of seven Tour de France titles in jeopardy. (AP Photo/Thao Nguyen, File)
PARIS (CNN) -- There will officially be no winner of the Tour de France for the years 1998-2005 after cyclist Lance Armstrong was disqualified for doping, cycling’s governing body, the International Cycling Union, announced Friday.
“The Management Committee decided not to award victories to any other rider or upgrade other placings in any of the affected events,” the group said.
The cyclist should return prize money he won in races between 1998 and 2005 because of his doping, the group said. Armstrong has always denied doping allegations.
Armstrong was stripped of his seven Tour titles and dropped by high-profile sponsors Nike and Oakley in the wake of a U.S. Anti-Doping Agency decision banning him from organized cycling for life.
In the past, Armstrong has argued that he took more than 500 drug tests and never failed. In its 202-page report, the USADA said it had tested Armstrong less than 60 times and the International Cycling Union conducted about 215 tests.
"Thus the number of actual controls on Mr. Armstrong over the years appears to have been considerably fewer than the number claimed by Armstrong and his lawyers," the USADA said.
The agency didn't say that Armstrong ever failed one of those tests, but his former teammates testified as to how they beat tests or avoided the test administrators altogether. Several riders also said team officials seemed to know when random drug tests were coming, the report said.